Music duo cancels shows in protest


URBANA — A European music duo has canceled their U.S. performances in response to the recent ban on some travelers. They were scheduled to play several U.S. Dates in February. Two were at the Krannert Center on the U of I’s campus.

It’s a move to show solidarity with those directly affected by the ban. The duo is made up of violinist Aisha Orazbayeva and pianist Joseph Houston. Three days ago the violinist tweeted: “Cancelling concerts in the u-s because of the #muslimban. Why can I enter when Syrians can’t? What’s the difference? They seek help & I entertain.”

Houston, the pianist, will not be allowed to travel without Orazbayeva due to visa limitations. Even though this is just one example, a senior studying business and music says it’s a shame policy has a negative effect on the arts world.

Madelyn Gunn says, “In terms of culture, in terms of diversity of music, of theater we as a nation benefit from that. So it makes sense that would spill into the arts world, so of course Americans are going to have to deal with that.”

Next Tuesday the duo was going to play at Krannert’s “Sonic Illinois.” Its a month-long celebration of musical diversity featuring performances, lectures and other events. The two were also expected to perform next Wednesday with the Illinois Modern Ensemble.

Krannert says they will replace the act with something else on Wednesday. Though anyone who bought a ticket for Tuesday’s performance will get their money back.


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